Saturday, May 27th, 2017

How to Travel with a Sibling


I love my sister, and I love that she’s just as crazy about travel as I am.

Sarah and I took our first trip together in June 2006, shortly after she graduated from high school and I graduated from college.  Our two-week Europe trip took us to London, Florence, Venice, Milan, Paris, Brussels and Bruges.

We had a blast, though we were not without the occasional setback.  What’s most important is that we got through the trip without any big fights.

Here are some tips on how to travel with a sibling without killing each other in the process:

Don’t push each other’s buttons.

Chances are that you can push your sibling’s buttons better than anyone else in the world.  And does it EVER get tempting.  But give in and you could find yourselves in a vicious cycle of insults or silent treatment that could drag on for days.

Rise above the temptation to be petty and your trip will be much more pleasant.

Don’t freak out when your sibling gets hit on.

It can be tough to watch people flirt with a family member of yours — especially when the family member in question is barely 18 years old and being hit on by 30-something guys!

You’re not a parent.  Your role is not to stop this.  There’s nothing wrong with a little bit of flirting in the hostel bar (most of the time, that’s all there is).  And if the best-looking guy in the bar is hitting on her instead of you, let it go.  LET IT GO.

(Of course, if your sibling is underage, intoxicated, or being hit on by a creepy weirdo, feel free to unleash the overprotective monster in you!)

Take turns staying in touch with your family.

Your parents will always worry about you when you travel, but their fears can amplify when not one but two of their babies are in a strange land.  While one of you is showering, have the other run downstairs and fire off a quick email to let them know you’re alive.

Unleash your inner goofy selves.

Your sibling has seen you through so much, there’s no reason to act cool.  Be goofy!  Be weird!  Pose with statues!  Take pictures of really awful mullets!  These will be the moments you’ll be laughing about years later.

Did I forget anything? Share your tips!


4 Responses to “How to Travel with a Sibling”
  1. ayngelina says:

    Great tips. I am also the older sister and I can see how it’s natural to unleash the protective instinct. When my sister was robbed she yelled and I leaped on the guy and pushed him away.

  2. Lissie says:

    I’ve generally travelled solo but the 2 people I don’t mind travelling with is my brother and my current partner – my brother is now married though so I am stuck with my partner! In a lot of ways travelling with a sibling is a nice compromise – you don’t have to feel “obligated ” to them the same way you are with a partner


Check out what others are saying about this post...
  1. […] forward nearly two years.  I returned to Florence with my sister.  We ate at Le Colonnine and the guy was […]

Speak Your Mind

Tell us what you're thinking...
and oh, if you want a pic to show with your comment, go get a gravatar!

− one = two